TRAVEL THERE: GETTING CONNECTED
Royal Caribbean calls their internet service VOOM and it comes in two flavors – with and without streaming. We call it FAIL in either flavor.
First Impressions Matter
After a disappointing Embarkation Buffet and Sail Away, we were getting worried about out cruise, but the boat was nice, our cabin was fine and we liked our cabin attendant. All was not lost – yet. We’d made a stab at having fun. Now it was time to get down to business. As I shared a few weeks ago, even though he’d tried to offload his business for the few days we’d be gone, it hadn’t worked and Bill was going to have to keep an eye on the market. For that we’d need internet, so we made our way to Deck 5 to do a little business.
Literature I had read suggested there would be an internet cafe somewhere on the boat with free wi-fi. There wasn’t. Perhaps some of the ships have it, but not Vision of the Seas. There were a few computers you could log onto and there was some limited internet access, but if you wanted to check your email forget about it. Doing what Bill wanted to do would have been impossible.
We went to the Customer Service Desk and they said we could just log-in and get internet ourselves or we could see the Internet Desk. Since there were two different packages and he wasn’t sure which one he wanted, he went to the Internet Desk. He also only wanted internet on two of the four days, not the balance of the cruise.
There was no attendant at the Internet Desk, so we cooled our wheels until they came back. When she appeared, Bill really challenged her scripts. Everybody is supposed to want internet for the whole cruise and she didn’t know what to think of Bill. In the end, she also told him how to sign up online, because if she signed him up on his phone,he’d have to log out of the phone and then log back in on the laptop. See when you sign up for internet you only get it for one person on one device – and they mean it.
So we dutifully went down to the room. I finally started unpacking and Bill sat down to log in. Soon I was unpacked and Bill was headed back out of the room, because what had sounded so reasonable at the Internet Desk didn’t work on the laptop in the room. I stayed behind to finish unpacking and to start getting ready for the evening.
When he got back I could tell things did not go well. The VOOM lady had offered to give him a refund when he told her how much trouble he was having. I bet that was an interesting conversation. She quickly got the message that a refund wasn’t going to cut the mustard and soon he was working his way up the food chain to find someone on board who could get him online. They’d finally gotten him operational, but barely. He was one unhappy cruiser.
Obviously, things were not going well on this cruise – and guess what! The disappointments had only just begun. Come back next week and we’ll go investigate a few other shortfalls.